For a flexible HTPC, use the OS that Linus made

Subject: Systems | August 12, 2010 - 05:52 PM |

As ExtremeTech is quick to point out, proprietary HTPCs are easy on initial setup but incredibly difficult to customize and most people will find that after a while they would like at least some customization on their HTPC.  There is a way to build a box that is completely flexible, it just takes some setting up before you can use it.  Do not give up hope as they will take you through the setup of a flavour of Linux specifically customized to be the OS behind an HTPC, Mythbuntu 10.04, as well as t

Source: Extremetech
Subject: Systems
Manufacturer: Puget Systems

Puget Returns with a quiet option

Puget Systems is back with a gaming PC that is rated under 20db - and if you don't know how quiet that actually is...your breathing is probably louder. They are able to accomplish this with mostly off-the-shelf parts and careful selection of components. Stop in and learn by example on how quiet computing can be done!

What can you do with a $650 pre-built system

Subject: Systems | August 6, 2010 - 11:59 AM |

At $650 the Acer Aspire M3400 falls between the Budget and Mid-Range systems on the PC Perspective Hardware Leaderboard in price.  Both the GPU and CPU are from AMD though the parts differ from the HWLB build, using a Phenom II X4 820 and an HD 5450 on an unspecified motherboard that sports the AMD 800 series chipset and 6GB of DDR3-1333.  The performance is about what you would expect, reasonable for general usage after the removal of the crapware that comes pre-installed but not a gaming machine by any means.&nbs

Source: AnandTech

Western Digital hopes to provide your next media centre

Subject: Systems | August 3, 2010 - 06:26 PM |

It is not quite an HTPC as it does not seem to have recording capabilities, the WD TV Live Plus HD media playercan stream from your Netflix account, YouTube and various other online media sources making it a little more useful than many media streamers.  It is rather small, about the size of an external HDD case and it consumes about 4W which makes it great for people short on space and fre

Source: AnandTech

A little box that can record any video you want to feed it

Subject: Systems | July 23, 2010 - 01:28 PM |

At $200 the Hauppauge HD PVR High Definition Personal Video Recorder is a small box that connects to any video source and records it.  To test that claim Bjorn3D tried recording from their cable set top box, an Xbox 360 game, a Xbox game, satellite television, Blu-Ray movies  in 1080i, a SD DVD movie, and even a movie off of a VCR.  All were completely sucessful, the HD PVR did not have a problem recordin

Source: Bjorn3D

Lenovo's AMD powered all in one PC

Subject: Systems | July 20, 2010 - 05:32 PM |

Lenovo's C315 is an all in one desktop PC, what looks like a large touchscreen monitor is in reality a full PC with every bit of the functionality of a more common looking box.  It might even be more capable than some as the list of components even includes a TV Tuner.  Inside is an Athlon II X2 250U @ 1.6GHz, ATI HD 4530 M92-M+ integrated graphics, 4GB of RAM and a 500GB spindle based HDD.  The configured system that Tech Spot tried was $849, more expensive than many other all

Source: Tech Spot

ASRock's HTPC system gets an upgrade

Subject: Systems | July 7, 2010 - 05:54 PM |

The ASRock Core 100HT represents a big upgrade in performance for this series, moving off of the ION platform and instead using an Intel i3-330M 2.13GHz as a processor really gives a bump in performance capabilities.  The entire system is 7.68" x 2.76" x 7.32" and its black finish will allow you to place this unobtrusively in
a living room and the wireless connectivity will help you if you stream content from another machine.  Something new to think about is 3D TV and gaming, something you would assume was limited to machines with a high end video card or two;

Summer system updates

Subject: Systems | July 2, 2010 - 02:53 PM |

The Tech Report has updated their system guide for the summer, featuring everything from a new Econobox to an improved double stuff system.  They also go beyond just internal hardware recommendations to look at the choices you have in operating systems and even a bit on the most important peripherals such as monitors.  Drop by and see what they recommend for you and don;t forget that we have our own PC Perspective Hardware Leaderboard, freshly crafted each month.

A round up of low powered media streaming boxes

Subject: Systems | June 21, 2010 - 03:24 PM |

The term media streamer can be attached to many devices, from a high powered NAS device to an Xbox by way of custom built HTPCs, but in this review AnandTech has classified a media streamer as a device capable of streaming media but is on a diet of 50W or less.  That does reduce the lineup quite a bit as very few HTPCs or servers are able to survive on 50W of power.  From Atoms and IONs to ARM based processors and into gaming consoles, they cover almost all of the bases of boxtop streame

Source: AnandTech

Puget builds a sound computer

Subject: Systems | June 15, 2010 - 02:22 PM |

If you have been shopping for a high end prebuilt boutique computer then there is a good chance you've run into Puget Systems.  Their systems have been reviewed before at several sites such as [H]ard|OCP but this time Ryan got a chance to test one of their systems and it was impressive.  The Puget Systems Deluge that he received had an i7-980X, 12GB Kingston DDR3-1800 and a pair of GTX 480's in SLI on an ASUS P6X58D Premium.  Sure the system will run you $6000 but take a look at t